Coping with cancer fears

Do you know anyone with cancer?
Or anyone in remission after cancer?
How do they cope ? How do you cope?

Cancer does affect all of us – even if it does not affect our own body cells directly, it does affect our minds, our hearts, our feelings when someone close to us is suffering from this nasty desease or is in remission after cancer treatment.

What I hate about cancer is that even when it seems to be gone, you can never be sure. It always sits in the back of your mind, it always hides deep in your heart. Every follow up test, every follow up visit to the doctor brings back the fear of recurrence, no matter how deep it might have been hidden. Every phone call from the hospital after all those never-ending tests makes your heart skip a beat.

From Just Cancer

Tips for Coping With Fear of Recurrence

 from the American Society of Clinical Oncology.


Accept fears. It is common to experience some fear about cancer recurring. Telling yourself not to worry or criticizing yourself for being afraid won’t make these feelings go away. It may also help to remember that the fear usually lessens over time, and that you won’t always feel so anxious. Be aware that your anxiety may temporarily increase at certain times, such as before follow-up care appointments, around the anniversary date of your diagnosis, or if a friend is diagnosed with cancer.

Don’t worry alone. Talking about your fears and feelings can help reduce your anxiety. Talking and thinking about your concerns can help you explore the issues underlying your fear. Fear of recurrence might include fear of having to repeat cancer treatment, losing control of your life, facing death, or losing someone close to you.

Please don't abandon your friends or loved ones after learning of their cancer diagnosis. If you have a fear of saying the wrong thing or have a fear of losing that person (whatever it is that makes you want to flee from the person with cancer) figure it out & work thru it.....Because to abandon someone with cancer right when they need you most is unforgiveable.From

Be well informed. Most cancers have a predictable pattern of recurrence. Although a doctor cannot tell exactly what will happen, an oncologist will be able to give specific information about whether the cancer might recur and what symptoms to look for. Knowing what to expect can help you stop worrying that every ache or pain means cancer is back.


Adopt a healthy lifestyle. Eating a well-balanced diet, exercising regularly, and getting enough sleep helps you feel better physically and emotionally. Doctors do not know why cancer recurs in some people and not in others, but avoiding unhealthy habits, like smoking and excessive drinking, may help reduce the risk of recurrence.


 Reduce stress. Finding ways to lower your stress will help lower your overall level of anxiety. Experiment with different ways of reducing stress to find out what works best for you.

  • Spend time with family and friends
  • Spend time on hobbies and other activities you enjoy
  • Take a walk, meditate, or enjoy a bath
  • Exercise regularly
  • Find time for humorread a funny book or watch a funny movie
  • Avoid unnecessary stress€”don’t take on unnecessary responsibilities or commit yourself to tasks you don’t have time for
  • Simplify your life


Cancer makes us look at life a bit differently. Some things that were important no longer seem as important as they were. Let’s try to enjoy every new day we have. 🙂



22 thoughts on “Coping with cancer fears

  1. Veda says:

    very true.. 🙂

  2. Mark Baron says:

    Cancer has left an indelible scar on my life. I lost the only grandparents I knew to cancer. four years ago, I lost my dad to cancer. And my son, my 8 yr old little boy, has been fighting leukemia for almost 3.5 years now. Thanks for providing a good reminder of how to stay positive through it all!

  3. Hornblower says:

    Although I wouldn’t wish it to cancerous patients, I must admit that moderate levels of stress and anxiety does spur me on to be more productive and take greater levels of action. Writing for instance, is a solemn duty, and when one accepts the solitude for what it is, I find that the stress, the anxieties, and the self-criticisms turn around to be your friends if cultivated wisely. Does come with an health warning though: prone to excessive amounts of coffee, odd hours of sleep, irregular meal patterns…

    • Otrazhenie says:

      When I wake up at night full of anxiety and fears, I start blogging or working. Changing focus does help a bit. As Dale Carnegie once said, “If you want to conquer fear, do not sit home and think about it. Go out and get busy! ” 🙂

  4. butchcountry67 says:

    My wife is battling stage 4 (end stage) lung cancer, she never smoked a day in her life, we cope 1 day at a time, though it is hard on me to see her suffer so, it is even harder on our 13 year old son to see his Mom so sick.

  5. I really liked this post, thought it was beneficial and informative. Can’t stop cancer from coming back, but you can try and enjoy the healthy days you have.

    • Otrazhenie says:

      Very good point. Loved your comment. Very good reminder to all of us to try and enjoy our healthy days and appreciate that. So often we take our health for granted. So often we are moaning and groaning about minor things in life instead of focusing on a bigger picture, on what really matters in life 🙂

  6. Ladybuggz says:

    I recently learned a friend in Hungary has Prostate Cancer, he travels on a bus 4 hrs one way to his treatments and 4 hrs home. He is a Teacher, to get to his work is a 1 hrs bus trip each way. There ( Hungary) Government has legislated all teachers must work 8 hrs a day. So his actual day is 10 hrs.
    I don’t know what kind of HealthCare he has or what is offered but I worry about him and his family as they struggle each day as it is, then to add Cancer, it makes me shutter becasue I can’t do a darn thing for him.

  7. Rob Taylor says:

    Interesting and informative post.

    It is true….one can never be sure. I am a two-time survivor, eight years out from the second battle. I don’t look back. I choose to live my life without the confinements of fear. I have always maintained a very healthy life style and keep evolving that process. There are few things more crippling to our inner balance, and damaging to the body, than submission to fear.

  8. annesquared says:

    We all carry cancer cells in our bodies. Mine have manifested in a rare type that is usually misdiagnosed by doctors for a number of years before a proper diagnosis is made.
    I deal with humor, healthy lifestyle, educating myself, and advocating for patients that believe challenging a doctor is not within their right.
    Sometimes denial works 😉

  9. Very uplifting information that will not only help those suffering from cancer but also those who love them who may not always know exactly what to do or say. Thank you so very much for sharing!

  10. I wonder if there is anyone who has not been touched in some way by cancer.
    The positive aspect for me is that, where once before, the word itself was used as an all-encompassing death sentence, so many medical strides have been made in identifying the different types that a diagnosis of cancer now does not necessarily mean the end.
    It is sound advice to deal openly with an oncologist and know what may be faced. Detection is paramount and we must be alert to symptoms and query doctors who might initially misdiagnose or take too much time in referrals.
    I feel certain there is a cure for all types and it is a pity that research is so dependent on charity.
    You have highlighted many positive approaches to take which can have a huge impact on how the disease may be coped with.

    • Otrazhenie says:

      I wonder sometimes about that as well. There seem to be so many people around affected by big C. Luckily, it does not necessarily mean the end these days. Not with all types of C. Thanks for your insightful comment.

  11. pndrgn99 says:

    The like button refused to load after a very long time so. LIKE
    I made my own. :<)

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